The Idea Dude


Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Deja vu

Watched a series called 'Restaurant Makeover' on the FoodNetwork this week. Here's a real life scenario that brought back vivid memories. The designer has 6 days to do a complete restaurant makeover. The designer turns out to be very ambitious in her proposal. The foreman, pressured into getting everything done gets the carpenter to help do the plastering. Then the electrician (the lights have not arrived yet) has to build the bar which is what the carpenter should be doing. He does a great job but there is confusion because there are two sets of plans for the bar. The designer can't figure out which is the right one. They call the folks who are doing the counter top. Yet, when it finally gets delivered, the counter top does not fit the bar that has been built. The following conversation ensues...

Carpenter: "If I did the bar, this would have not have happened!"
Designer: "Why is the carpenter doing the plastering instead of what he is good at?"
Foreman: "You gave us too much to do. It was the only way to finish."
Electrician: "This wasn't my job and it isn't my fault, the plans were wrong."
Carpenter: "I should have done this, it wouldn't have happened."
Foreman: "It wasn't his fault, the plans were wrong."
Designer: "I don't know why there are two sets of plans."
Foreman: "Get them to make a new counter top, the structure is already built"
Carpenter: "I should have done this."
Designer: "I still can't figure out the plans."
Electrician: "The plans were wrong, it's not my fault."
Designer: "We'll have to redo the bar."
Foreman: "Then we have to demolish everything. We wasted all this time."
Designer: "You guys are great, I know you'll figure it out"...and exits...

In the end, they do the right thing, rebuild the bar, it is terrific and all is well...

In the heat of the moment, you see all the emotions, confusion, accusations, guilt, justification, fear, anger...It's reality TV at its best...just like reality software development...only the names have been changed...

There's a great book (at least the first third, I'm convinced most if not all leadership books should be a third of their size but authors feel they have to pad to justify the price of the book...but that's another topic for another day)...I digress, the book is called The Oz Principle (Hickman, et. al). It's about individual and organizational accountability. I love the beginning because it talks about the many excuses we make to justify why something didn't happen. I've mentioned this before in another post. The most profound statement they make in the book is accountability is not what you did but what you are going to do....

My standard reply to these situations..."It is what it is"......"How do WE fix it!"

As John Maxwell says..."Don't keep score...", it is the surest way to self-destruction.


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